Fabamy's Blog

Crazy life of a CenPho comedian & socialite

Community. August 13, 2011

Filed under: The kidney donation — fabamy @ 11:44 am
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The past few days, I’ve seen some things said about community. Or lack of it. People who don’t feel a sense of community are usually those who don’t deserve it. You have to be a good person for a community to envelope you. You have to GIVE to get.

Living in CenPho for 6 years now, I’ve always felt a sense of community. Familiar faces in the grocery store, the cashier at the local mini-mart, and groups like Yelp have shown me what community it. Out of that, I’ve become involved in branches that stem off everything else.

In comedy, there are a few different communities. There is a LOT of drama, but I’ve found a niche of people I enjoy performing with/for and I consider that a community.

Yelp has to be the first real community I have become involved in since moving to Phoenix 9 years ago. I’ve been a Yelper for 5 years now and have met some amazing people. During the kidney testing & surgery, Yelpers who I had never met came to fundraisers. The Community Managers showed support by helping to promote our events. Why? Because it’s a great community. Sure, there are assholes in that community, but does 1% really matter against 99%? Nope.

Facebook has shown me community as well. I’ve been getting friend requests from other kidney donors for the past several months. We’ve built a community by sharing ideas on aftercare, things to be aware of, and giving each other a pat on the back. It wasn’t an easy thing to do, but to have support from perfect strangers with the bond of saving another life built another community.

I’ve never been to India and I am not a religious person, but thoughts and prayers were sent my way. Hinduism is a very spiritual religion and I felt it, from a billion people, from half a planet away. Community.

And then there’s the monster community-builder for me: Twitter. Getting messages & follows from people around the world who heard our story, just because they wanted to show support to a stranger who did a good deed. You don’t have to donate money to our cause to show support. Showing up at a fundraiser and enjoying good food & entertainment are support enough. Believe me, seeing a friendly face made me get through terrible days more than once. Random, anonymous donations came in. How could it NOT be a community???

And then, there is Phoenix, and most importantly, the group of food enthusiasts & restaurant owners who came out in droves to show what community is. A restaurant I had never eaten at brought me food the day after I got out of the hospital. Three restaurants donated proceeds to our cause, and they didn’t have to. It’s a tough economy and the F & B industry is suffering, yet these people felt they had to do something. Countless products & gift certificates have been donated. By people I don’t even know personally.

As I write this, I am crying so hard I can barely see the screen. If it weren’t for ALL the communities I am so freaking lucky to be a part of, I wouldn’t have gotten through everything. It was an incredibly tough journey & I had to hide a lot of the pain so that my new brown family didn’t have to feel badly. My healing process was cut very short because of one thing: community.

So, if you feel there is no sense of community out there, you need to take a look at yourself. Blaming the outside world, constantly, is just proof that you have no idea what community is and you probably don’t deserve to be a part of it.

Community.

 

Kidney donation recovery May 1, 2011

Filed under: The kidney donation — fabamy @ 4:37 am
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Well, it’s been 11 days since I donated my kidney to TinyMom. I am finally moving around better. For the first time in 11 days, I wore underwear yesterday. I couldn’t wear it until now, because my belly was so swollen from the incision they made to pull my kidney out. I’ve got 4 laproscopy scars on my stomach/rib area which still have the meditape on them, though one fell off finally today. Everything is itching. The scabs from the laproscopy are about the size of a dime. The incision down in my pubes is about 3 or 4 inches across. It’s like a mini c-section. It hurts a little still, but I am only taking pain pills at night for it. There are yellowish bruises around it. The stitches are dissolving, thankfully.

I went out yesterday for lunch for Yelp Office Hours. I was only out for 90 minutes, but it pretty much drained me. Because my remaining kidney is growing to compensate for losing the other one, I get tired easily. I also went to dinner with Kirti and that pretty much did me in. We went early, 5pm, and I was home early, but I was exhausted. It’s really hard for me to NOT go out and do social things, especially since I am not really driving much yet. That’s been the hardest part: not driving. I’m single, I live alone, and I’m extremely independent. Relying on others has been tough, but I am so thankful for my friends and neighbors who have been carting my ass around.

My neighbor Nancy took me to Whitfill today to get some plants for my patio and apartment. That’s about all I could do today. I napped for 2 hours this afternoon and that NEVER happens. I love naps, but I rarely sleep for more than an hour.

I have to step back and try not to push myself the next week or so and be thankful that I have the opportunity to relax.

I’ve been working everyday, which I do from home on my laptop, so that’s been pretty easy to get back into. My job is not a 9-5, M-F. I work whenever I can. I’m grateful for my job and I love what I do, so it’s easy to get back into it.

The support I’ve gotten from people is just amazing! Then again, there are some people I thought were truly my best friends that I haven’t heard from once since deciding almost 4 months ago to donate my kidney. I guess I am realizing who the really, truly genuine people are in my life and who the flakes are. Maybe some people aren’t comfortable with the subject, but no matter what, I would support my friends in something this big. It hurts that I haven’t gotten that back from some. Oh well, right?

I am still sooooooo happy with the decision I made and I am glad to be bouncing back. The pain is almost gone and I can deal with being tired by sleeping. Would I do it again? Yes, but, thankfully, I only have one kidney and can’t. Hahaha!

 

 
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